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Thread: European Identity.

  1. #26
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    In this case it's more about survival and peace dictated in western terms, than equality and morality. I hope Iran is smart enough to see it.

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    Mainly, it's a manipulation of media coverage. "They" just issue what "they" want as to know. And we will never ever know any details about this Iran conflict and nuclear weapon. This kind of making someone bad in eyes of public just results in a great support to start military operation in that region. Just remember Saddam Hussein. Actually, he was not as devilish as it was being told in media. However, people were kind of "occupied" with the mainstream media sources that daily were announcing the non-human plans of Baghdad against American people. And you all know about the result of this media manipulation. Iraq war.! I think in case of Iran the story is gonna to repeat. However, we are dealing with politics and media and I don't think about an identity in this case. Because neither British government nor Netherlands made a kind of referendum to decide whether withdraw an embassy from Iron or not. I am quite sure, many people will be against this. In this case there is no room for an identity to discuss. Everything is mainly about politics...

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    Researcher, what do you think was the main reason to attack Iraq?

    I don't think Iran war is going to happen, at least with ground troops. There is no money, in size of one trillion dollars, to finance it. If it comes to worse we will see air strikes ala Libia, that's all.

    If Iraq war was done old fashion way, we would see US completely controlling Iraq and it's natural resources. They would already recouped the war costs and made lot extra to have funds for next war with Iran, or someone else. Well, it didn't happen. There was no money made on this war, except for few businesses supplying military. At the end it was all financed by US taxpayer, and taxpayer is poor like never before. Next war with ground troops? I don't think so. Actually we'll see reverse. Withdrawing from Iraq, then Afghanistan, reducing bases around the world, and reducing military budgets. All US attention will be concentrated on paying debt and reviving economy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Antigone View Post
    And not without reason, this is yet another typical western witch-hunt.

    Possibly when the west abolish their own nuclear programmes and disarm warheads they will be in a position to dictate to others whether they can or cannot have nuclear anything. But right now, the finger pointing and moralising at Iran is hypocritical in the extreme.
    I think you miss the point. If Iran gets a nuclear weapon, it is the very survival of Israel that is at stake. After the Shoah (and despite Europe's passivity in the 6 Days War), Europe has a responsability towards the Jewish people. Notwhistanding that Europe will be within reach of the nuclear heads...

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    I agree with Lebrok, and it is probably why Iran keeps hard building its bomb, they know western economies are on their knees and have others problems to deal with. Implicit support from China and Russia helps too. The most important problem for Iran now is buying time before Israel decides to strike. A full-scale war is not on the books.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cimmerianbloke View Post
    I think you miss the point. If Iran gets a nuclear weapon, it is the very survival of Israel that is at stake. After the Shoah (and despite Europe's passivity in the 6 Days War), Europe has a responsability towards the Jewish people. Notwhistanding that Europe will be within reach of the nuclear heads...
    IF (being the operative word) Iran is a threat to Israel. I think that is more hype to demonise Iran, via governments and through the media in order to scare populations into backing military action. This tactic has been used many times in the past (Iraq, Afghanistan and Lybia the most recent), and by your post it looks like it has worked again. The Europe will be within striking distance line has also been used before, remember Iraq and Lybia?

    But overall I agree with both Researcher and Lebrok.

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    Iran delenda est.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    Researcher, what do you think was the main reason to attack Iraq?

    I don't think Iran war is going to happen, at least with ground troops. There is no money, in size of one trillion dollars, to finance it. If it comes to worse we will see air strikes ala Libia, that's all.

    If Iraq war was done old fashion way, we would see US completely controlling Iraq and it's natural resources. They would already recouped the war costs and made lot extra to have funds for next war with Iran, or someone else. Well, it didn't happen. There was no money made on this war, except for few businesses supplying military. At the end it was all financed by US taxpayer, and taxpayer is poor like never before. Next war with ground troops? I don't think so. Actually we'll see reverse. Withdrawing from Iraq, then Afghanistan, reducing bases around the world, and reducing military budgets. All US attention will be concentrated on paying debt and reviving economy.
    Dear lebrok,
    I also hope there gonna be no war. Unfortunately, the tendency of the past several years just proves contrary. In my opinion, America will not be directly involved in the military campaign, as it was in Iraq. This is due the difficult financial situation and the bankrupt of economy. However, it can manipulate Israel to start a war. yes it sounds a bit dramatic, but it's true. just remember the Georgia campaing against South Ossetia in 2008. Tbilisi will never ever start that war which killed more than 300000 of civil citizens, without any external support. And this support was found in America. It is hard to undersand in how far America is simply manipulating the government of other "independent countries". I am just worring that the story can happen again, but in this case with Iran and Israel. I hope for the best, the political elite will be rational and try to escape the horror of a military actions.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cimmerianbloke View Post
    I think you miss the point. If Iran gets a nuclear weapon, it is the very survival of Israel that is at stake. After the Shoah (and despite Europe's passivity in the 6 Days War), Europe has a responsability towards the Jewish people. Notwhistanding that Europe will be within reach of the nuclear heads...
    Israel is not likely to be attacked by nuclear weapons by Iran. How do you aim a country half the size of the Netherlands with nuclear weapons without affecting bystanders? The fall out produced would probably contaminate the Palestinians and other surrounding Arabic countries as well... Iran would hardly win the hearts and minds of the Arabic people with this. But I agree Europe is probably a much more easier target to hit.

    Nuclear weapons are mainly psychological weapons. The most annoying part to the West, Israel and allied Arabic countries like Saudi-Arabia is that it becomes very difficult to threat Iran by military means. It changes the diplomatic dynamics.

    Besides Pakistan in my opinion is a far more dangerous nuclear power because of the conflicts with India and its internal instability.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Christiaan View Post
    It changes the diplomatic dynamics.
    Exactly...the balance of power will shift. Because of the arabic-spring, countries in the northern part of Africa will have a major state-shift; as it can already been seen in Egypt with the elections. With these major developments and with the crisis within Europe itself, it will become harder and harder for Europe to act as one Union. ->and this has implications for the 'identity/integration-discussion' as well...

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    Dear all,
    I think we shifted far away from the topic of this thread. The discussion is extremely interesting and it points out the main political as well as economic flows in nowadays world However, how do you reflect that to European Identity? Christiaan, You already mentioned, that Europe is the easiest target to hit? Could you please elaborate upon that? I mean, why Europe? You think it is not enough to resist?? I can assume that the Foreign and Security policy of EU in cooperation with NATO will preserve any attempt to hit Europe. Do you think that this "picture" of week Europe is due to the conflicts between European countries. That Greece is being blamed for the crisis on European ground. There is no unity any more? and everyone is just fighting for his own sake?

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    How about the role of religion within this 'European Identity' ? Do you feel more European if you are Christian ? Are you less European as a Jew ? What I always ask myself is whether the generations of north African immigrants that came to Europe after the 1950s, consider themselves 'European' and whether their definition of European and Europe is the same as individuals who are fully rooted from Europe...
    I think the European Identity is very much a Christian Identity, and it is no surprise to see European countries unite against a country like Iran, since they are defending the European Identity (as pointed out earlier by Kgnju) but are also defending the Christian values against Islamic ones. You know how people say History is like a cycle ? Well the idea is very true isn't it ? Christian countries versus Muslim countries, takes you right back to the 11th century doesn't it ?
    But on another point - European solidarity does not always mean European Identity. Remember when French President Chirac refused to enter the war in Iraq less than a decade ago ? Well he followed French interests, yet other EU countries joined this war. France 'bailing' on the solidarity did not ruin the European Identity.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Researcher View Post
    Dear all,
    I think we shifted far away from the topic of this thread. The discussion is extremely interesting and it points out the main political as well as economic flows in nowadays world However, how do you reflect that to European Identity? Christiaan, You already mentioned, that Europe is the easiest target to hit? Could you please elaborate upon that? I mean, why Europe? You think it is not enough to resist?? I can assume that the Foreign and Security policy of EU in cooperation with NATO will preserve any attempt to hit Europe. Do you think that this "picture" of week Europe is due to the conflicts between European countries. That Greece is being blamed for the crisis on European ground. There is no unity any more? and everyone is just fighting for his own sake?
    First of all Iran is not intending to start a war at all. Yes it is provoking and teasing its favourite enemies as they always do. However the only difference now it is developing nuclear weapons. And of course that is a bit headache for the region and the West. Israel and the US do not want to have power shift of that kind in the region at all. Because in the end it is all about oil and stability - everything that changes this status quo is a possible threat. Who is the next country in the M.E. that wants nuclear weapons in the region ...Saudi Arabia?

    If a conflict would escalate on a nuclear level, which I think is very unlikely at the moment. Israel itself, how funny it might sounds, would not make a good nuclear target because of the collateral damage to its Arabic neighbours. So even Europe, if involved, would make a better target than Israel, being not near to Islamic nations. But again I don't think Iran wants to face the consequences of a nuclear war at all as you mentioned yourself with NATO and others.

    On a defence level Europe is not that divided as you might think if they lets say would get attacked by Iran. No doubt even Germany would act appropriately. But on offensive level Europe is clearly divided. Britain is not particularly known for its pacifistic foreign policy in contrast to Germany with its much more cautious nature. The economic crisis is important, but not that important for this "weakness".

    Uk is I think is the most EU sceptical country of all and being an island this will not change overnight. It wants the benefits of the EU, but not its burdens. I wonder what would happen if Wales and Scotland would become independent - would they join the Euro-zone?

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    Quote Originally Posted by francois14 View Post
    How about the role of religion within this 'European Identity' ? Do you feel more European if you are Christian ? Are you less European as a Jew ? What I always ask myself is whether the generations of north African immigrants that came to Europe after the 1950s, consider themselves 'European' and whether their definition of European and Europe is the same as individuals who are fully rooted from Europe...
    I think the European Identity is very much a Christian Identity, and it is no surprise to see European countries unite against a country like Iran, since they are defending the European Identity (as pointed out earlier by Kgnju) but are also defending the Christian values against Islamic ones. You know how people say History is like a cycle ? Well the idea is very true isn't it ? Christian countries versus Muslim countries, takes you right back to the 11th century doesn't it ?
    But on another point - European solidarity does not always mean European Identity. Remember when French President Chirac refused to enter the war in Iraq less than a decade ago ? Well he followed French interests, yet other EU countries joined this war. France 'bailing' on the solidarity did not ruin the European Identity.

    No, it is not Christian values versus Islam at all. At most secularism against theocracy. And don't forget the oil that is at stake.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Christiaan View Post
    Israel is not likely to be attacked by nuclear weapons by Iran. How do you aim a country half the size of the Netherlands with nuclear weapons without affecting bystanders? The fall out produced would probably contaminate the Palestinians and other surrounding Arabic countries as well... Iran would hardly win the hearts and minds of the Arabic people with this. But I agree Europe is probably a much more easier target to hit.

    Nuclear weapons are mainly psychological weapons. The most annoying part to the West, Israel and allied Arabic countries like Saudi-Arabia is that it becomes very difficult to threat Iran by military means. It changes the diplomatic dynamics.

    Besides Pakistan in my opinion is a far more dangerous nuclear power because of the conflicts with India and its internal instability.
    Well, this is true, but only under assumption that Iranian leaders are logical, smart and generally good people. If they were though, Iran would be much different country that it is now. Therefore this assumption is out the window. If you connect it to the fact that Iran is run in big part by religious clerics then situation complicates even farther.
    Besides, what stops terrorists from blowing the intended target plus tens of innocent citizens in collateral damage, and even their countrymen? In their mind it's not a tragedy. The killed bad guys went to hell, but the innocent good people went to heaven. Where is the harm?
    Last edited by LeBrok; 06-12-11 at 03:15.

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    Bullseye, Lebrok, Iran is not the kind of regime you can negociate with. Dying for the cause is an honour for extremist muslims. As for demonizing them, there is no need, they can do a proper job by themselves:
    http://articles.cnn.com/2005-10-26/w...ld?_s=PM:WORLD

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    I think Iran is getting a A bomb mainly for these reasons:
    - to feel more secure among neighbors, which already have A bomb.
    - deterrent against being attacked by USA or Israel.
    - huge ego and ambitions of Iranian leaders. This actually could be a main reason. There is still a popular mindset in middle east that to mean something in the world one needs to be a superpower. These countries have more numerous armies and spend bigger percentage of GDP, than most better off european counterparts.
    - to suck out money from US and Europe. I know N Korea played similar game before. US and S Korea payed billions of dollars to North to stop developing nuclear weapons, plus supply of peaceful nuclear technologies for free. Well N Korea has the bomb now and billions of dollars. What a sweet deal!
    Sucking out the ****** is also played by Pakistan, who is pretending to fight Taliban for 10 billion a year of US help. Iran is pretending not to build A bomb, obviously not for free.

    Having said that, if I was in Israel and have heard, through years, assurances from Iran government about whipping me out off existence, seeing Iran's willingness to support terrorism against Israel and ongoing effort to built A bomb, what would I do? Asked people around "Iran is just kidding, right?", and prayed for the best?

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    Quote Originally Posted by LeBrok View Post
    I think Iran is getting a A bomb mainly for these reasons:
    - to feel more secure among neighbors, which already have A bomb.
    - deterrent against being attacked by USA or Israel.
    - huge ego and ambitions of Iranian leaders. This actually could be a main reason. There is still a popular mindset in middle east that to mean something in the world one needs to be a superpower. These countries have more numerous armies and spend bigger percentage of GDP, than most better off european counterparts.
    - to suck out money from US and Europe. I know N Korea played similar game before. US and S Korea payed billions of dollars to North to stop developing nuclear weapons, plus supply of peaceful nuclear technologies for free. Well N Korea has the bomb now and billions of dollars. What a sweet deal!
    Sucking out the ****** is also played by Pakistan, who is pretending to fight Taliban for 10 billion a year of US help. Iran is pretending not to build A bomb, obviously not for free.

    Having said that, if I was in Israel and have heard, through years, assurances from Iran government about whipping me out off existence, seeing Iran's willingness to support terrorism against Israel and ongoing effort to built A bomb, what would I do? Asked people around "Iran is just kidding, right?", and prayed for the best?
    I agree with you they are not generally good people. When Ahmedinedschad smiles, milk turns sour and a spotless blue sky gets clouded instantaneously, but this far he is obviously logic and smart enough to stay in power. You can only stay in power when you are not in the hereafter. So a comparison with terrorism is not well chosen, because you can't get away with a nuclear war. It sums it up like this: Iran building a nuclear bomb is a win-win situation for the regime. Whatever its enemies do it will get those in trouble who try and try not. It is choosing between two evils and it will escalate if they think have nothing to loose any more.

    And do not forget Iran struggles with its own internal problems. With all the new developments in the M.E. the end for this regime could be in sight very soon. Maybe after the next presidential elections (2013?) people in the cities will rise again like they did in 2009.

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    I hope Christaan that you are right. And only hope we have, because if we can learn from history, most european politicians didn't believe Hitler's speeches nor his book. In spirit of hoping nothing was done in advance to stop Hitler, who shortly proved them wrong in a very ugly way. Steep price for humanity for not believing a person in power.
    If Israel strikes Iranian military sites, can we blame them for not wanting to rely on hope only?

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    People arn't seeing this through Israel's perspective. Hezbola is a proxy of Iran, Iran doesn't need to fire a nuke at Israel, they just have to let Hezbola do it, or just give them a dirty bomb. Israel has been in hostile relations with its neighbours since its inception, they had many wars and conflicts throughout its life. People that don't live in this kind of environment can not judge this correctly, if you were a jewish/Isreali citizen living in Israel, would you want Iran to have a nuke? Iran doesn't have a responcible government, they don't deserve this kind of technology.

    I think there will be a armed conflict with Iran, what nature it will be I can only guess. America moved all its troops out of Iraq so they won't be potential targets by Iranian forces, or to deploy them into Iran. Unless we work in the Amercian government or secret services, we don't know 100% of what goes on diplomatically in the Middle East, only what the news sources tell us.

    I'm a strong supporter of a nuclear-free Iran.

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    1 out of 1 members found this post helpful.
    Well, well, well...

    This thread started well, trying to find the normally elusive (but sometimes evident according to the situation, as Muzungu well explained), and now we have it deviated to the "need to bomb Iran", because of the insistace of Kgnju.

    By the way, recently the mayor-general Zhang Zhaozhong said explicitly "China will defend Iran even with WW III if necessary"... so I don't know why precisely "Kgnju from Beijing ( 北京 )", brings that theme.



    http://www.eutimes.net/2011/12/chine...r-3-over-iran/

    Then, we have here some supporters of the idea that Iran should be bombed, and there are given some "bold" arguments about that.

    (Curiously, Elias2 that is Jewish is the most moderate of all).

    The things that I find most unconfortable, are the following two...


    A. While I agree that Europe (specially Germany) is somehow moraly indebted with Israel - as Cimerianbroke said - I don't believe that that indebtness should be expressed as enmity against other peoples.

    I know that the theme of Jews/Israel is very sensitive inside Germany, they are very sensitive about things like Holocaustleugnung (negation of Holocaust) which one can comprehend, and some others that plainly do not make sense when seen from outside (Holocaustrelativierung).

    But after all, that are internal German laws and politics, which one should respect.

    However, as the recent voting in the UNESCO showed, other peoples (the majority) in regard to the Palestinean-Israeli theme, do not feel any "indebtedness" or "Schuldkomplex" and they plainly vote as its own (according to me, more objective) concousness dictates.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011...ian-membership

    +++++++++++++++++++

    B. The other thing in which I feel compelled to comment, is this statement of @LeBrok:

    In this case it's more about survival and peace dictated in western terms, than equality and morality. I hope Iran is smart enough to see it
    Maybe they see it clearly, and they refuse to obey?

    (... In the name of the Crown X, I declare this land to belong to the Kingdom Y... )

    Remember that the Iranians just landed a 30 million USD drone (the most advanced and expensive type) taking electronic control of it, the first time it tried to violate IRANIAN airspace.

    You may not like them, but they have their pride.

    And rights.

    And if many people do not see it, believe me: Some others do.

    Some do it because it appeals to their inherent sense of justice... others because they cannot prevent but to see themselves in Iran shoes (Russia? China?).

    Regards.

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    Well, well, well...

    This thread started well, trying to find the normally elusive (but sometimes evident according to the situation, as Muzungu well explained), and now we have it deviated to the "need to bomb Iran", because of the insistace of Kgnju.

    By the way, recently the mayor-general Zhang Zhaozhong said explicitly "China will defend Iran even with WW III if necessary"... so I don't know why precisely "Kgnju from Beijing ( 北京 )", brings that theme.



    http://www.eutimes.net/2011/12/chine...r-3-over-iran/

    Then, we have here some supporters of the idea that Iran should be bombed, and there are given some "bold" arguments about that.

    (Curiously, Elias2 that is Jewish is the most moderate of all).
    I'm not Jewish, I can see things from many perspectives. Its very evident that the arabs/muslims don't want peace with Israel, they want Isreal off the map. Religion is still a big tool in the Middle East, it can and does manipulate people, Hezbola literally tanslates into "Army of God". The same can be said with Israel wanting to annex the west bank, which they are doing slowly over time, to fulfill their ancient dream of Judea promised in the Torah.

    We are not politicians, we can talk directly with each other. Neither side wants peace with each other, they both have their malicious goals motivated by religion. Where the "West" is incorporated with this is similar to the events of the Iraq-Iran war, any conflict that disrupts oil exports hurts Western economies, in todays recession this is not an option. Of course the Jewish lobby does have a huge influence in American politics, combined by the fact that the "west" has been struggling with Islamic terrorism has caused a very anti-Islam mainstream thought in North America and Europe.

    B. The other thing in which I feel compelled to comment, is this statement of @LeBrok:



    Maybe they see it clearly, and they refuse to obey?

    (... In the name of the Crown X, I declare this land to belong to the Kingdom Y... )

    Remember that the Iranians just landed a 30 million USD drone (the most advanced and expensive type) taking electronic control of it, the first time it tried to violate IRANIAN airspace.

    You may not like them, but they have their pride.

    And rights.

    And if many people do not see it, believe me: Some others do.

    Some do it because it appeals to their inherent sense of justice... others because they cannot prevent but to see themselves in Iran shoes (Russia? China?).

    Regards.
    Iran can choose to follow what course it wants to, but it has to be responcible for the outcome. Now we are entering into a double standard politic, domestic vs. international. Iran doesn't repsect the wishes and represses its own population who do demand for better rights, but on the other hand your arguement is that we should show them the same rights they don't show their people? I don't agree with this. If Iran was a fully democratic human rights persueing nation then yes, I would support the Iranian nuclear program. But the Iranian government is a theocratic dictatorship with psuedo-elections. In my opinion this type of government doesn't deserve nuclear technology.

    China and Russia won't support Iran for the simple reason of economics, they don't have anythign to benifit from it. China export market is America, and Russia is about to enter the World Trade Organization, they both have zero to gain for straining relations with the worlds biggest markets.

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    when EU gets embassies as EU and not as countries then we might speak of a clear European identity,

    until today we all are Europeans, but first we are our private nation ID,

    meaning that each one of us trust first his nation and then the neighbor european and then the rest,

    a good example of that is that at least all EU countries have their own embassies at foreign lands

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    Quote Originally Posted by Elias2 View Post
    I'm not Jewish, I can see things from many perspectives. Its very evident that the arabs/muslims don't want peace with Israel, they want Isreal off the map. Religion is still a big tool in the Middle East, it can and does manipulate people, Hezbola literally tanslates into "Army of God". The same can be said with Israel wanting to annex the west bank, which they are doing slowly over time, to fulfill their ancient dream of Judea promised in the Torah.
    Certainly we have a religious differences here. But many times these real differences are used as a "smoke screen" to hide other reasons for conflict between Israelis and Palestineans/Arabs. But I agree with what you said above and I will leave it at that.

    Iran can choose to follow what course it wants to, but it has to be responcible for the outcome. Now we are entering into a double standard politic, domestic vs. international. Iran doesn't repsect the wishes and represses its own population who do demand for better rights, but on the other hand your arguement is that we should show them the same rights they don't show their people? I don't agree with this. If Iran was a fully democratic human rights persueing nation then yes, I would support the Iranian nuclear program. But the Iranian government is a theocratic dictatorship with psuedo-elections. In my opinion this type of government doesn't deserve nuclear technology.
    I think that Iran should be compared with other Muslim countries in the Middle East, and you will see that something do not fit with the argument that "Democracy" is a factor of the especial hostility of the West towards them.

    For starters, against whom have Israel/West done or manaced with war in the last years?

    Lebanon, Palestina, Syria, Libya, Iran... precisely against the most modern regimes, the ones that give/gave women and religious minorities more rights, in most of which there was/are actually elections.

    On the contrary, everything (and I mean everything, including massacres of defensless peaceful proterstors) is allowed to the medieval monarchies of the Middle East. And we know that the real reason is not "democracy", "right of the women", and so on, but simply because they are docile with the West or accomodating to the Israli policy.

    China and Russia won't support Iran for the simple reason of economics, they don't have anythign to benifit from it. China export market is America, and Russia is about to enter the World Trade Organization, they both have zero to gain for straining relations with the worlds biggest markets.
    Israel is now very angy with Russia because it just supplied S-300 and "Yakhont" to Syria. The Russian and Chinese (at least until now) block a UN resolution against Syria. At the moment no one could say if the Syrian regime will survive with the last-hour support from Moscow and Beijing. The fact is that they are supporting it, not only against the West and Israel, but also against the corrupt arab Monarchies.

    Why do they do that?

    "Hey!! Why could we just not drop all our guns and live like a one big happy family!!"

    ( Yes you drop your guns... and we will do the sacrifice to arms ourselves to "protect democracy and free markets".... )

    So like in the mass media of the West the effort is done to show the Palestineans as "Arab fanatics" that hate Israel just for the fact of being populated by Jews, so in said madia really very rarely is shown the reasons why Russians and Chinese (or Iranians, or many others) have reasons to distrust the West.

    Why have just the Russians put "Iskander" missiles in Kaliningrad/Königsberg?

    These crazy Russians over-react at the slightest thing? They do that because they want to distract their own population of internal problems? Or is it that the West pushed them and finally they were left with no choice?

    You say that the Russians and Chinese should follow "an economical logic" and "self interest" in their international relations.

    Who tells you they have not followed them since many years ago?

    Regards.

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    I think that Iran should be compared with other Muslim countries in the Middle East, and you will see that something do not fit with the argument that "Democracy" is a factor of the especial hostility of the West towards them.

    For starters, against whom have Israel/West done or manaced with war in the last years?

    Lebanon, Palestina, Syria, Libya, Iran... precisely against the most modern regimes, the ones that give/gave women and religious minorities more rights, in most of which there was/are actually elections.
    Democracy is not the only factor about the hostilities with Iran, but it does give the "west" the moral high ground. The practical reasons we have discussed before. I also have to disagree with you about the concept of "modern regimes". These regimes arn't cracking down on religious extremist because they disagree with them, but because they see them as a threat to their rule. I would disagree when you say they also gave religious minorities rights, I would term it more as protection. Mubarak would intervien against the violence against the coptic christians, but he wouldn't promote their rights. Many laws under mubarak did not change that supressed the coptics. The same can be said with Assad and the Orthodox and catholics in Syria.

    On the contrary, everything (and I mean everything, including massacres of defensless peaceful proterstors) is allowed to the medieval monarchies of the Middle East. And we know that the real reason is not "democracy", "right of the women", and so on, but simply because they are docile with the West or accomodating to the Israli policy.
    There is a double standard of american policy. Saudi Arabia ia aurguably the worse human rights violating arab country but nothing bad is said about them Turkey also has repression and violation of freedoms but they are a key American ally so nothing bad is said about them either. It's a double standard.

    Israel is now very angy with Russia because it just supplied S-300 and "Yakhont" to Syria. The Russian and Chinese (at least until now) block a UN resolution against Syria. At the moment no one could say if the Syrian regime will survive with the last-hour support from Moscow and Beijing. The fact is that they are supporting it, not only against the West and Israel, but also against the corrupt arab Monarchies.

    Why do they do that?

    "Hey!! Why could we just not drop all our guns and live like a one big happy family!!"

    ( Yes you drop your guns... and we will do the sacrifice to arms ourselves to "protect democracy and free markets".... )

    So like in the mass media of the West the effort is done to show the Palestineans as "Arab fanatics" that hate Israel just for the fact of being populated by Jews, so in said madia really very rarely is shown the reasons why Russians and Chinese (or Iranians, or many others) have reasons to distrust the West.

    Why have just the Russians put "Iskander" missiles in Kaliningrad/Königsberg?

    These crazy Russians over-react at the slightest thing? They do that because they want to distract their own population of internal problems? Or is it that the West pushed them and finally they were left with no choice?

    You say that the Russians and Chinese should follow "an economical logic" and "self interest" in their international relations.

    Who tells you they have not followed them since many years ago?

    Regards.
    Yup, all this points to a conflict in the near future. We can discuss the validity of all this but it won't prevent it. Though I want to ask you to clarify what you mean when Russia and China were pushed into this senario. The only people that should worry about dictators being disposed is other dictators. Or China and Russia want to play some power politics with America? we will see.

    cheers.

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